Convocation 2014 celebrates faculty and student achievement at UMass Worcester

UMass Medical School Communications

September 15, 2014

White Coat Ceremony 2013

UMass Worcester marks the start of the academic year with a full slate of events this week, designed to recognize the accomplishments of students and faculty.

The highlight of the week will be the formal Convocation ceremony Thursday, when Chancellor Michael F. Collins delivers his annual address and bestows the 2014 Chancellor’s Medals for excellence in teaching, research, service and clinical care upon faculty.

An Investiture ceremony will follow, with three distinguished faculty members inducted as named professors and the donors who funded the professorships honored. Faculty members being invested are:

  • John F. Keaney Jr., MD, professor of medicine  and chief of the division of cardiovascular medicine, who will be invested as the Mary C. DeFeudis Chair in Biomedical Research;
  • Tiffany A. Moore Simas, MD, MPH, MEd, associate professor of obstetrics & gynecology and pediatrics, who will be invested as e the Joy McCann Professorship for Women in Medicine; and,
  • Vivian Budnik, PhD, interim chair and professor of neurobiology, who will be invested as the inaugural Worcester Foundation for Biomedical Research Chair.

The Graduate School of Nursing’s Pinning Ceremony on Monday, Sept. 15, is the first event of the week, when 29 students from the Graduate Entry Program (GEP) receive their Registered Nurse pins and recite a pledge to serve their communities and their profession. The GEP was established in 2004 to expand the nursing workforce by giving a pathway into the profession to individuals with bachelor’s degrees in fields other than nursing. Students become registered nurses after one year of accelerated coursework, and then continue with graduate study that qualifies them to become nurse practitioners, nurse educators and nursing executives.

Students will receive their pins in front of family and friends at 6 p.m. in the Sherman Center’s multi-purpose room on the first floor. A reception follows in the café.

The Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences will host a recognition ceremony on Wednesday, Sept. 17, at 4:30 p.m. in the multi-purpose room on the first floor of the Sherman Center. The event honors students who have successfully completed the qualifying exam, which marks the transition from classroom-based learning to candidacy for a doctoral degree. A reception follows in the Sherman Center café.

Wrapping up Convocation Week activities will be the White Coat Ceremony on Friday, Sept. 19, at 3:30 p.m., in the multi-purpose room at the Albert Sherman Center. In the presence of family, guests and faculty members, first-year School of Medicine students will be welcomed into the medical community by campus leaders and ceremonially presented with their first white coats, which have been donated by members of the recently graduated SOM Class of 2014. The keynote speech will be given by Richard S. Irwin, MD, professor of medicine, the recipient of the 2013 Chancellor’s Medal for Clinical Excellence. A reception follows in the Sherman Center café.

All events are open to the UMMS community and will be live streamed on the web. For more information about these events, visit the University Events web pages:

Related links on UMassMedNow:

Moore Simas named Joy McCann Professor for Women in Medicine

Hudson Hoagland Society honors Warner Fletcher


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